The Gujarat High Court on Monday came down heavily on a Hindu organisation seeking ban on the exhibition of Kedarnath starring Sara Ali Khan and Sushant Singh Rajput. While refusing the ban the film, the High Court bench comprising Acting Chief Justice AS Dave and Justice Biren Vaishnav slammed the petitioner ‘International Hindu Sena’ for misrepresenting Hinduism.
“We are of the view that the present petition is not only misconceived but is based on a wrong notion about Hinduism as understood by the petitioner. But Hinduism as a concept, religion and faith, tolerance for all religions, patience, harmony and welfare of mankind as a whole are the basic tenets of Hinduism,” the bench was quoted by Livelaw website.
The petitioner had objected to a Muslim boy, played by Sushant, falling in love with a Hindu girl, played by Sara Ali Khan, in the film. Taking a dim view of the argument, the court said, “Just because a Muslim boy is shown to be in love with a Hindu girl at a holy place, we fail to understand how religious sentiments of Hindu community will be affected.”
The Uttarakhand government headed by the BJP had banned its release in the state citing the same reasons, argued by the Hindu organisation in its petition. However, the Gujarat High Court felt that any prohibitory steps from its side would result in a breach of fundamental rights of all those involved in the making of the movie.
The High Court, according to LiveLaw website, said, “On the contrary, in our opinion, any preventive step or prohibitory action on the part of the Court by issuing notice and granting ban on exhibition of movie, which is a work of fiction and creation of art, will certainly result in breach of fundamental rights, more particularly, right to freedom of speech and expression, of the Producer, Director and Exhibitors, including script-writers, as they are carrying out lawful activity by producing, directing and exhibiting films.”
Despite being banned in Uttarakhand, the film has performed well at the box office, collecting more than Rs 50 crore in its second week. This earning has been only from the Indian market.